What did Julius Caesar look like? A Dutch museum have just revealed a 3D representation of the Ancient Roman dictator that is deemed to be incredibly realistic. However, the shape of his skull has raised some questions…
Several portraits of Julius Caesar are well known, such as the Arles bust, or those present on Roman coins. However, we now have a more realistic representation than ever before: a three dimensional reconstruction of the Roman dictator’s head, modeled by anthropologist Maja d’Hollosy.
The anthropologist was inspired by two marble busts scanned in 3D, one of which is found in the Rijksmuseum van Oudheden in the Netherlands. The second is a copy dating back to 50-40 BC of a bronze original which is kept in the Museo di Antichita de Turin (Italy). The latter is considered the most realistic portrait of Julius Caesar known until now.
The most surprising aspect of the results obtained by Maja d’Hollosy is the shape of the skull. It is commonly known that Julius Caesar was born by caesarean section, which could explain the shape of the head. But at the time, this type of operation caused the death of the mother, or left her dying. However, this explanation may be no more than a legend, because according to testimonies recorded in various works, his mother Aurelia survived and saw her son growing up.
We should mention the fact that this 3D representation was created with the support of archaeologist Tom Buijtendorp, and that this coincided with the publication of his most recent work, called Caeser in the Netherlands. It can be seen until the end of August in the Dutch National Museum of Antiquities.
The archaeologist also has his opinion on the strange shape of the head in the aforementioned 3D representation. According to Buijtendorp, this shape was not simply dreamed up of by the artists, particularly at the time, when realism reigned supreme.